30 Years of Lessons Learned as a Cancer Survivor


Tomorrow, July 2, is the 30th anniversary of my surgery for stage 3 colon cancer. So it seemed like a good time to reflect on important truths God has taught me in these past three decades. Whether you’re living in cancer’s shadow or some other life struggle, my prayer is that your heart will be encouraged today.

30. Life is often unfair, but God always is faithful. 
29. We may be given more than we can handle, but it’s never more than God can handle.
28. Your trial has not taken God by surprise; He is in control and knows exactly what you need.
27. The family of God is a gift from God especially for times like these.
26. Nothing about your situation can separate you from God—keep looking for Him in unexpected places.
25. Anyone can beat cancer (or any disease) because being victorious is not only about being cured.
24. God loves your loved ones even more than you do.

23. You can take all your questions to the Lord…He will either give you the answers you seek or the peace to live without them.
22. Remember the ABCs of life’s struggles: Accept you don’t have the whole picture. Believe a loving God does. Continue on by faith and not by sight.
21. Wounded healers make wonderful comforters–let Him comfort others through you.
20. God can create beauty from ashes, turn mourning into dancing and change weeping into joy.
19. Cancer—or any life struggle—can be a very deep pit, but the love of God is deeper still.
18. You are not waiting for test results; you are learning to depend more on God.
17. Sometimes we need to hear people’s hearts and not just their words.

16. We find peace when we fill our minds with absolute truth and not simply information.
15. People cope differently with illness/trials and we need to appreciate those differences.
14. You’re either a funny friend or you need one.
13. Waiting goes against our nature, but draws us closer to the Lord better than just about anything else.
12. You positively don’t have to stay positive all the time.
11. God doesn’t need “good odds” to heal.
10. We find peace when we share laughter, troubles and blessings with an understanding group of friends.
9. We need to accept the diagnosis, try to defy the verdict and leave the outcome up to God.
8. Tears are a gift from God and we shouldn’t be afraid to let them fall.

7. God wants to bring blessing through trials…you just have to let Him decide the blessing.
6. Courage is not living without fear…it’s living in spite of the fear.
5. You are a lot stronger than you think…and God is a lot greater than you think.
4. Ask God to somehow, some way use your pain for His glory.
3. Today is another day the Lord has made and that is reason enough to rejoice.
2. God is able to do abundantly more than we can ask or imagine.

And No. 1. Let God simply be God.

Let Him be the mighty, awesome God, powerful enough to heal any and every person, body, mind and spirit.

Let Him be the absolute sovereign God, wise enough to know how and when to answer any and every prayer.

Let Him be the unfalteringly faithful God, willing to strengthen us for any and every circumstance.

Make sure to open this blog in your browser to hear a song I want sung at my memorial service someday!


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